Saturday, July 2 2022

This roundup will help you stay informed about our influencing work and any government policy and funding announcements. For news related to what’s happening in parliament, check out our regular roundup.

Chairman of the charity committee

Orlando Fraser has been appointed chairman of the Charity Commission. It will be the second consecutive president who has not received the explicit support of Parliament. The government needs to review this process and ensure that future presidents have this support.

Although we are concerned about the process, we are pleased that Orlando Fraser has made strong commitments to the independence of the Charity Commission; regulatory involvement being based solely on charity law, not political pressure. We have a strong working relationship with the Charity Commission team and management, and we look forward to working with the new chair.

Spring statement and rising costs

On March 23, the Chancellor made the Spring Statement, an update on progress against the year’s budget. Given the #costoflifecrisis and Russia’s war in Ukraine, the Chancellor announced several new policies to ease pressure on household budgets. This Twitter thread includes a summary of the policies.

Although there are some welcome measures, we generally think there is a lack of support for people who are not working. We also believe that charities will experience increased demand due to the cost of living crisis, as well as rising delivery costs – be it food or energy and fuel.

We would like to hear from members on this issue. Email [email protected] if you are concerned about the impact of rising costs on the people you work with and the support you provide.

The government closed their consultation on the terms of reference for the public inquiry into the response to the pandemic. We responded to this consultation by asking the government to include a number of points in the terms of reference, including the engagement and support of civil society and volunteers during the pandemic. This survey will inform the approach to future emergencies.

Access to banking services

Many of you have told us that lack of access to banking services makes it difficult for your charity to fulfill its mission. Barriers range from bank charges to branch closures and difficulty opening and switching accounts.

We work with other infrastructure bodies, the Charity Commission and UK Finance to develop solutions for charities. We have developed a survey to better understand your experiences and represent you when talking to decision makers.

Please help us by completing this survey before May 6. If you have any questions please contact [email protected]

You can also read our online advice on banking and investment.

Charitable Commission Register

The Charity Commission is currently collecting information from charities about what they do, their approach and the people they help. This classification data is part of the Charities Registry. The Charity Commission has reviewed and changed its approach to classifying charities in the register, which you can find out more on the Charity Commission website. We support efforts to improve this data, but are concerned about the proposed system.

The Charity Commission will carry out user testing this month to ensure the codes are fit for purpose and charities are able to rank. If you would like to be part of it, please contact [email protected] Codes will be revised as needed, based on feedback from these tests.

UK Shared Prosperity Fund

Details of the UK Shared Prosperity Fund were released on April 13. This was accompanied by explanations of possible interventions, outcomes and indicators, and other information on Multiply (the government’s adult numeracy program).

The funding will be allocated to all areasand local governments will be responsible for creating local plans with a wide range of stakeholders, including charities.

Low Pay Commission

low pay commission opened a consultation on the impact of recent and upcoming increases in the National Living Wage (NLW). NLW will drop to £10.32 in April 2023 and is expected to drop to £10.95 in April 2024.

To share your views on the impact of the NLW increase on your organisation, please email [email protected] You can also read our online salary and benefits advice if you need help in this area.

National Advisory Group

NCVO was announced as one of the members of the National Advisory Group for the Trade and Cooperation Agreement, alongside a range of business groups, civil society organizations and labor representatives. The purpose of the National Consultative Group is to discuss the operation of the Trade and Cooperation Agreement and resolve any issues.

We want to make sure we reflect the broader concerns of civil society – that’s where we need you. If you would like us to raise a matter related to the Trade and Cooperation Agreement, or discuss its operation, please contact [email protected]

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